Whether following the 2012 Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft online or over the airwaves, or pursuing other diversions should the waiting game become too tense, the small group of locals hoping to hear their names called will likely spend the three-day event on the edge of their seats.
Crescenta Valley High senior Troy Mulcahey, Glendale Community College freshman Alonzo Gonzalez and a handful of Gonzalez’ Glendale Angelenos teammates have all garnered interest from big league clubs in recent months.
Just how much interest will be seen over the course of the draft, which starts with the first round and Compensation Round A on Monday at 4 p.m. PDT.
The fates of local talent, however, will likely be decided between rounds two through 40, which will be streamed live on mlb.com on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Mulcahey, a right-handed pitcher/outfielder and reigning All-Area Baseball Player of the Year, has been touted as a future prospect since first entering high school and hopes to hear his name earlier rather than later on Tuesday.
“It feels pretty great. I’m extremely nervous on how the draft is going to go,” said Mulcahey, who is hoping to be selected as early as the sixth round. “But I’m all high hopes and I know even if I don’t get drafted, I still have college.”
Troy’s father Dan Mulcahey said that 25 of the 30 Major League Baseball teams have contacted Troy and out of those, they have had continuous contact with six clubs. Troy Mulcahey said the Philadelphia Phillies have shown the most interest and he also worked out for the Chicago Cubs on May 20.
Troy Mulcahey, despite his prowess as a power hitter is still being looked at primarily as a pitching prospect.
Dan Mulcahey said teams have been concerned with the fact his son didn’t pitch much for Crescenta Valley down the stretch of the Falcons’ Pacific League title run and subsequent CIF playoff appearance, but he said Mulcahey’s arm is fine, there’s no injury concern and the lack of pitching appearances simply came down to his coach’s decisions.
Gonzalez, a left-handed pitcher, recovered from an injury to go 7-2 with a 2.59 earned-run average in helping Glendale college reach the postseason for the second year in a row. He struck out 40 and didn’t allow a home run all season.
“He’s a 6-foot-5 left-handed pitcher who shows great athleticism,” Vaqueros Coach Chris Cicuto said. “He’s shown he can improve with every outing, but in reality his projectability is a little high just because of that size.
“I think any team that takes a shot on him is going to get a player that’s going to eventually have a good career in the professional ranks.”
Cicuto said Gonzalez has had looks from the Toronto Blue Jays, Cincinnati Reds andSt. Louis Cardinals and Cicuto expects him to go somewhere in the 20s.
“In my opinion, if he does get a chance to sign for decent money, he should probably take that,” Cicuto said. “As far as his future is concerned, he’s definitely a professional pitcher, it’s just a matter of how he matures in the next year.
“I think after one more year [in college], he could probably elevate his stock exponentially and get drafted in the top 15 rounds. We don’t want to see him leave, but if he has that opportunity, we’ll be the first ones to shake his hand, congratulate him and send him on his way.”
In their inaugural 2011 season, the Angelenos, an independent summer collegiate team, had six of their players selected in the draft. The numbers don’t figure to be as high this season, but Coach Tony Riviera expects there to be some activity over the coming days.
“We had quite a few guys get drafted last year,” Riviera said. “This year I think Sean Wardour has a very good chance of being drafted. I think Chad Nacapoy has a chance of being drafted, he’s been working out for a few Major League clubs.”
Wardour, a right-handed pitcher, posted a 2-5 record with a 5.43 ERA as a senior for Cal State Dominguez Hills this past season, while Nacapoy, a Crescenta Valley graduate, batted . 361 with two home runs and right runs batted in in 24 games as a senior at Cal State L.A.
Hoover High graduate and GCC alum Sako Chapjian, who was selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 45th round last season, is looking to get drafted higher the second time around. The third baseman/left fielder has used his junior season at Cal State Dominguez Hills to ripen as a prospect, while taking up the position of catcher to further enhance his appeal.
He led the Toros this season in RBI with 32 and walks with 22, while batting .288 with seven home runs, 14 doubles and 38 runs scored.
“I think Sako has a very good chance of being drafted,” Riviera said. “He’s been working out for some clubs and he put up some really good numbers again [at Dominguez Hills].”
Riviera is also of the opinion that Angelenos shortstop Matt McCalister, who drove in 19 runs and stole 11 bases for GCC this season, may go in the later rounds.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if Matt McCalister was drafted,” Riviera said. “I think he’s got as good a chance as anybody else.”
Crescenta Valley standouts Elliot Surrey, a left-handed pitcher, and Kyle Murray, a right-hander, may draw a late look, but Falcons Coach Phil Torres thinks they are both a couple years away from being drafted. Surrey is committed to UC Irvine, while Murray will attend Cal State Fullerton.
“Kyle Murray has thrown hard enough at times to be drafted, I just don’t know if he’s won enough games,” Torres said. “Elliot, I’m sure, will be drafted at the end of three years of college. There’s no reason to draft Elliot now because they know he’s a college guy and that’s where he’s headed.”